"…a mechanical genius, Lois was born in 1950 and brought up in Tatabanya, Hungary, one of the industrial strongholds of Hungarian socialism, amongst waste machines and wreckage. Under this new industrial civilization, Lois strives to develop a new folklore that nestles upon post-modern individualism and internationalism. Lois' oeuvre is machine. He endows cold machines with passionate artistic life and reincarnate them into sculptural musical instruments. His creations reflect the fast-paced obsolescence of the Industrial Revolution and, at the same time, carry a new life that "Sounds" out the future. Their outcome is complex, enigmatic and irrationally romantic. The instruments have three aspects: first they are like motionless sculptures, then they start moving (sometimes giving off light), then they become mobile and finally they make sounds…" (1992 critic by Konkoly Gyula)
In 1978 in Tatabanya City, Lois opened a private gallery to the public named "Beteg Szamar Galeria" (Sick Donkey Gallery) in which he installed his artwork, primarily wood sculpture, and programmed avant garde artistic events continuously. This is the first private gallery in Hungary under the Communist era. This Gallery sets an example for the avant-garde movement in Hungary, which greatly impacted the art circles and puts him in the critical position among the Intellects.
In 1996 Viktor Lois was given a Museum building (in the compound of the well-known Tatabanya Mine Museum) in Tatabanya City, Hungary, which exclusively displays more than 70 pieces of his sculptures. It is the only museum dedicated to one artist for long term solo exhibition that is supported by public fund and administered by government staff in Hungary. Every summer, since 1997, in the vicinity of Lois Museum building, Viktor Lois directs an International Summer Art Camp which invites both Hungarian and international artists from various disciplines (sculpture, music, photographer, installation, multi-media…etc.) to create work and hold exhibition. In 2006, after 10 years of operation, the Art Camp has a large collection of 35 pieces of permanent, outdoor sculptures.
The artwork that brings Lois fame is his MUSICAL INSTRUMENT sculpture which he starts creating in 1987. For 20 years he created around 200 musical sculptures, a body of work that best represents the artistic fruit produced under the socio-political background of the past two decades in Eastern Europe. This is truly a body of Cross-disciplinary art work in which the composition of sound/music is embedded in the sculpture form and vise versa, the form makes the sound/music tangible.
Viktor Lois´ TUNDRAVOICE band stages contemporary alternative music
with his sculptural instruments around the world
Lois' work is exhibited and performed frequently in major museums and galleries throughout Europe (such as Austria, Germany, USSR, France, Italy, Netherland, Serbia, Czech, Slovak, Romania, Macedonia, Poland, Croatia…), US and Asia; his work is in the permanent collection of the Contemporary Art Museum in Budapest and the museums in many above-mentioned countries.
He also has a band named TundraVoice which plays solely on his sculptural musical instruments is one of the most unique features of the Budapest Music Festival. In 1993 he represented Hungary PARTICIPATED in the 45th Venice Biennale. Since 2005 he has been primarily residing in the Boston area.
Blue Motor Guitar
1 meter long, 15 cm high, 14 cm wide
electronic and recycled metals
Artist Viktor Lois demonstrates "Container Man" June 10, 2010 at the Contemporary Art Institute in Acton, MA.